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Undergraduates Studies

Bachelor of Pharmacy (BPharm) 3-year curriculum

The Bachelor of Pharmacy* programme is developed by taking reference from well-established pharmacy curricula offered by other international universities, international trends in pharmacist training and the specific requirements and demands for the development of pharmacy in Hong Kong. The programme is designed on the basis of an outcome-based approach to student learning which aims to produce graduates with solid knowledge of pharmacy as well as abilities to apply the core knowledge and skills for effective, humane and ethical delivery of pharmaceutical care.

* The Bachelor of Pharmacy programme has been granted accreditation by the Pharmacy and Poisons Board of Hong Kong. Students who have completed full-time study pharmacy degree and one additional year of internship are qualified as registered pharmacists in Hong Kong.

The distinctive elements include the following:

Strong Emphasis on Clinical Pharmacy
Clinical Pharmacy is the principle practice of pharmacists in developed countries. With the support of Queen Mary Hospital, a major teaching hospital with the largest team of clinical pharmacists in Hong Kong, students studying at HKU will enjoy early clinical exposure and also benefit from the inter-professional collaboration of pharmacists and clinicians through teaching on both wards and in outpatient clinics. Trained in a clinical setting, graduates on this programme will be allowed to actively participate in drug treatment, in particular in critical areas, e.g. the Intensive Care Unit [ICU] and the Accident and Emergency Department, and learn to provide expert service in safe, effective and rational use of drugs.

Community-based Training
Students will be adequately prepared to provide expert service at the community level. The biggest community pharmacy chain stores in Hong Kong welcome the proposal to train more quality pharmacists for the community and they will provide placement openings for pharmacy students of the programme.

Exposure to Chinese Medicine as well as Complementary and Alternative Medicine
It is important to equip future pharmacists who practice in Hong Kong with the knowledge of Traditional Chinese Medicine as well as Complementary and Alternative Medicines [CAM]. These include herbal medicines, Nutraceuticals, health care products, cosmetics, etc, which are commonly used by many patients in conjunction with Western medicines. The School of Chinese Medicine of the Medical Faculty will provide strong support to the teaching of Chinese Medicine for the programme.

Patient Counseling and Communication Skills
A key characteristic of the programme is to enhance students’ proficiency in providing primary health care services, including patient education. This is in line with the proposed service delivery model direction found in the consultation paper prepared by the Health and Medical Development Advisory Committee “Building a Healthy Tomorrow” in 2005. This document proposes a change of emphasis in healthcare policy from the present one based upon “Disease Treatment” to “Preventive Care” in the future. The primary health care integration system will involve not only family doctors but also other health care professionals including community pharmacists.

Training in Industrial Pharmacy
Students on the programme may have the opportunity to experience this unique area of pharmacy. This subspecialty is made possible at HKU by the presence of, and the interactions between, the BioPharmaceutical Development Centre of the Department of Pharmacology and Pharmacy, the Department of Chemistry of the Faculty of Science and the Clinical Trials Centre.

New Learning Approaches
Diversified “fit-for-purpose” teaching pedagogies will be adopted to manifest the specific features of the new undergraduate curriculum of “3+3+4”. As an area of strength of the Medical Faculty, the problem-based learning (“PBL”) approach will be adopted to encourage interdisciplinary inquiry and foster life-long learning skills, and provide students with opportunities for capstone experience and experiential learning (e.g. final year project and clinical attachment). Students will be well prepared for continuous postgraduate training through a taught Master of Pharmacy programme (which is planned for implementation in the 2012 – 2015 Triennium), or to pursue academic pharmacy by research postgraduate studies.

Themes Courses Year
1 Basic Medical Science Anatomy 1
Basic Biochemistry 1
Fundamentals of Organic Chemistry 2
Physiology and Pathophysiology I 2
Physiology and Pathophysiology II 3
Microbiology for Pharmacy Students 3
Immunology for Pharmacy Students 3
2 Pharmacy Practice Pharmacy Practice I 1
Pharmacy Practice II 2
Pharmacy Practice III 3
Medical Statistics and Epidemiology 2
Principles of Public Health (elective)+ 3
3 Clinical Pharmacy Clinical Pharmacy I 1
Clinical Pharmacy II 2
Clinical Pharmacy III 3
Clinical Pharmacology and Advanced Clinical Pharmacy 3
4 Pharmaceutical Science and Industrial Pharmacy Basic Chemistry Principles for Pharmacy Students 1
Analytical Techniques for Pharmacy Students 2
Medicinal Chemistry for Pharmacy Students 3
Physicochemical Principles of Pharmacy 1
Dosage Form Design 2
Advanced Pharmaceutics 3
Biopharmaceutical Discovery and Development (elective)+ 3
5 Pharmacology Pharmacology I 1
Pharmacology II 2
Pharmacology and Therapeutics 3
Toxicology and Drug Abuse 3
Medical Genetics (elective)+ 3
Molecular Pharmacology (elective)+ 3
6 Alternative Medicine Principles of Pharmacognosy, Herbal Medicines and Nutraceuticals 2
Cosmetic Science (elective)+ 3
Traditional Chinese Medicine (elective)+ 3
7 Others English for Pharmacy 1
English for Clinical Pharmacy 1
Practical Chinese Language Course for Pharmacy Students 2
Clerkship and Research Project 3
Common Core Courses* 1&2

*Students are required to successfully complete two 6-credit Common Core Courses before the end of the second year of study.
+Students are required to successfully complete a total of 6-credit elective courses (either one 6-credit elective or two 3-credit electives) in the third year of study.

E-mail : bpharm@hku.hk
Phone : (852)2819 9460 / (852)2819 9463
Website : www.pharma.hku.hk/index.php